Sunday, July 26, 2009

easy "no fuss" focaccia

Okay friends, you have to try this bread. I have had this one in mind to make for months now after seeing it on my friend Katie's blog, but it wasn't until yesterday that i decided to try it. a good friend was coming over for lunch, and i decided to make this because i thought it would go well with the tomato basil soup i was making. and it did. it is SO good! and SO easy! the recipe describes this bread as a "warm, aromatic yeast bread, hot from the oven—with no kneading, AND in under 2 hours". it's true, and it's delicious.

rather than baking one large loaf in a 9x13 pan, i chose to use two round cake pans. i did not have the final three ingredients listed as optional on the recipe, but the bread still tasted really good. and not because i'm some fabulous baker, but because this is just a great, easy, cheap, and impressive little bread to whip up!

i topped the bread with a sprinkle of kosher salt, some freshly ground pepper, and the herbs i used were rosemary, oregano, and thyme. i used fresh herbs, but dried would probably work well, too.

this bread is a great accompaniment to a soup, salad, or italian dish. please, please try this one...i am sometimes intimidated by baking bread because of the time and precision that can be involved, but this one was probably the easiest i've ever made. you will not be sorry you made this one...well, i take that back. you might regret it after you eat nearly half of it in one sitting like i did because you just couldn't stop!

this is a great accompaniment to a soup, salad, or italian dish. it also makes a great sandwich. i tried it for lunch today with warm turkey, melted swiss, coarsely ground mustard, and tomato, and it was so much better than my regular store bought wheat bread.

i was also thinking that this is a great bread to make as a gift-something for friends and family during the holidays, a new neighbor, a hostess gift...just a fun and easy alternative to cookies.

blitz bread: no fuss focaccia
by king arthur bread
the king arthur blog has detailed instructions and pictures here (and by the way, you should check out this blog if you haven't already. it is great for learning how to bake, has delicious recipes, and even has an 800 number you can call with questions while you are baking)

I N G R E D I E N T S :

1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) warm water
3 tablespoons (1 1/4 ounces) olive oil (plus additional for drizzling)
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 1/2 cups (14 ¾ ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 tablespoon instant yeast
4 teaspoons Pizza Dough Flavor, optional (i did not have)
1/4 cup Vermont cheese powder, optional (i did not have)
pizza seasoning, optional (i did not have)

D I R E C T I O N S :

Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan, and drizzle 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil in the bottom.

Combine all of the ingredients, and beat at high speed with an electric mixer for 60 seconds. (i did use the paddle attachment on my mixer after seeing that the king arthur blog used it for this.)

Scoop the sticky batter into the prepared pan, cover the pan, and let it rise at room temperature for 60 minutes, till it’s become puffy.

While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 375°F.

Gently poke the dough all over with your index finger.

Drizzle it lightly with olive oil, and sprinkle with pizza seasoning, and/or the dried herbs of your choice, if desired.

Bake the bread till it’s golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes.

Remove it from the oven, wait 5 minutes, then turn it out of the pan onto a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

(To make cheese-stuffed bread: Add 1 cup crumbled feta cheese to the dough after it's been kneaded for 60 seconds.)


Domestic Kate said...

Glad you liked it too! Can you post your soup recipe? I'm still trying to find a good tomato basil soup recipe.

MLS said...

I can tell everyone in your bloggy world that it is DELICIOUS!!!